Strawberry growers prepare for more favorable early December

11/04/2011 11:41:00 AM
Doug Ohlemeier

Wishnatzki said Wish Farms also should see production increases. Thanks to the addition of new growers, he said Wish Farms plans to harvest more than 2,000 acres, higher than the more than 1,500 acres it planted last season. Wishnatzki said he expects to produce 5 million flats.

Wishnatzki said transplants have remained on schedule and said he expects larger plantings of radiance variety berries to produce higher early season volume. Wishnatzki said growers should harvest from a couple of hundred acres of the new variety in late November.

Volume increases in mid-December and slowly builds into promotable levels by Christmas.

Jeff Williams, president of Wm. P. Hearne Produce Co. LLC, Wimauma, said he’s also heard acreage increased.

Williams said growers have told him they planted at least 800 to 1,000 more acres.

“Berry volume will be up,” Williams said. 

“We have our fingers crossed it will be a good season.”

Hearne planted 200 acres this season, up from 115 last season.

Florida volume typically runs through late March with smaller volumes shipped into mid-April.


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